In the previous installment, we discussed several facets that contribute to effective leadership. The traits of good leaders are many and vary with each person and personal management style.
See the Big Picture
In order for a manager or business owner to be effective, he or she must see the greater picture. Particular with larger businesses, while there are many parts to the whole, they all come together to create a final product. If the person leading a department fails to understand how that department’s work contributes to the whole, they may miss important opportunities for improvement. This also includes realizing whether a small error is indeed small, or deceptively large.
Provide Feedback, Especially Praise
For employees to know whether they are performing effectively, they rely on feedback from employers and supervisors. Without this feedback, employees may lose confidence in their contributions. Ineffective leaders focus on mistakes and give little attention to successes. While failures should absolutely be evaluated, a lack of praise can be exceptionally demoralizing. Employees may come to believe their manager is simply looking for reasons to criticize them. Simply taking a few seconds to provide positive feedback to an employee once a job is complete will stop resentment from taking hold.
Get Your Hands Dirty
While employees may respond to supervisors appropriately, they are far more likely to respect a leader who gets involved in the work process. Promoting from within by a business may help mitigate this factor, but those in charge should remember one simple phrase: don’t ask employees to do something you wouldn’t do yourself. A good example of this is working late. If employees are expected to put in a 10 hour day as a deadline approaches, supervisors and managers should not be skipping out the front door promptly at 5pm with a wave. If they’re working late, you should work late.
The importance of good leadership to a business cannot be overstated. Creating an atmosphere of mutual respect and understanding will go great lengths to ensuring productivity and peak performance, all of which will contribute directly to the success or failure of a company.